Ethanol, A Very BAD Choice!! Part 1

July 9, 2012

By

 

Leon Puissegur

 

 

We all see it when we pull up to gas up our cars, Ethanol 10%.  Yet if we look at this additive to gasoline do we find an alternative fuel or an additive that does more harm then good.  We always wondered about that especially since we had to put out over $120 to fix a small motor that we use for yard work.  The mechanic told us that we should not use Ethanol since the reaction caused by Ethanol did more harm to small engines then the so called good it was supposed to do. It was then that we decided to look into the idea of using Ethanol as an additive for gasoline. We wondered just how it came to be and if any real studies about the use of this additive had been done and what the outcome of those studies were.

 

We found a number of places that showed Ethanol as a very good additive to help the United States become energy independent.  We looked into these claims only to find that these studies were done in cooperation with the government or with assistance of Ethanol lobbiest. Most of these studies showed that Ethanol helped the environment and did not produce any sort of “Green House” gases.  We then sought out other studies from independent sources and found one report that perhaps makes the best statement NOT to use Ethanol at all!  That is right; this one report did scientific anylasis of Ethanol and raised some very serious questions about the production, use and problems associated with Ethanol! It showed much of what Ethanol is supposed to do has not been based upon fact but rather it has been based upon ideology of detering the use of imported oil.

 

In an article published by the; American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, written by Kenneth P. Green, it shows with clear and precise termonolgy that Ethanol is perhaps the worst idea of modern times. Mr. Green begins his paper with the title; Ethanol and the Environment By Kenneth P. Green. He begins;

“Contrary to popular belief, ethanol fuel will do little or nothing to increase our energy security or stabilize fuel prices. Instead, it will increase greenhouse gas emissions, local air pollutant emissions, fresh water scarcity, water pollution (both riparian and oceanic), land and ecosystem consumption, and food prices.”

 

WOW!  This is revealing to say the least!  We bet that very few people even have a single thought about this as they pull up to the pump and just begin pumping that most wonderful gasoline/ETHANOL mixture into their tank.  How many people give any thought whatsoever about any sort of problems that Ethanol may well produce rather then provide a clean environment. Think about that the next time you fill up, how much foul gas will you be pushing out your cars exhaust due to the use of Ethanol?  How many people will die from Asthma due to Ethanol and the use of it?  Yes, the gases from Ethanol being expelled do contribute to some health problems. It is a fact that only 2/3’s of Ethanol is actually being burned, the rest that is not burned contributes to “Low Level Ozone”, that is the type of Ozone that causes breathing problems during hot weather and even the meterologist have to issue high “Ozone” alerts during hot weather!  That “Low Level Ozone” just does not happen to pop up at the low level; it is “produced” by the mixture of Ethanol with gasoline!! We will show proof of this later from the article written by Mr. Kenneth P. Green. For now allow us to show just one very good reason to tell Washington, D.C. to STOP the production of this Poison called Ethanol!

 

We have done some research to see if Ethanol helped fuel consumption or hurt it. We fueled a V-8 truck up with 10% Ethanol and rode around town until we had to fuel up again. We made a note that we got an average of 15 miles per gallon. We then fueled the truck up with gasoline without Ethanol just to see if it made a difference. We figured that it should not make much of a difference since it was only 10% of the total amount of gasoline used. We drove at the same speed, and used the same roads until the next fuel up.  We found that by using plain gasoline the truck got 17 miles per gallon. That was two miles more per gallon without the Ethanol. We know it does not seem like much but if you add that milage up per tank, you end up being able to go an extra 52 miles if you ran all the way to empty.  It should not matter that much but if you gain an extra 52 miles per tank of gasoline on just plain gasoline then it makes no sense at all to even think about using any sort of blend with Ethanol or any other additive!  It isn’t economical nor efficient.

 

Now we did something else to see what a difference would be if we did the same thing on an open road where speed was constant and did not vary.  We were surprised at what we did find out. We ran the same V-8 truck again for 400 miles on an Interstate. We averaged 18 miles to a gallon on the Ethanol mixture.  We turned around gased up with plain gasoline with no additives and the average jumped up to 20 miles per gallon, again a two mile per gallon increase over the Ethanol mixture, we did see about ten miles where the average went up to 21 miles per gallon, but it dropped back down to 20 miles per gallon so we used that figure since it was constant.  Here again we find that we gained an extra 52 miles per tank of gasoline. This indicates very well that on the average usage INCREASES without any additives in gasoline and it clearly displays Ethanol DECREASES miles per gallon!  This alone should be reason enough to demand that Congress stop the production of Ethanol and Increase the production of oil, natural gas, and coal!  But we do need to get back to Mr. Green’s article because his research and the article itself prove what we learned to be just a minor reason to demand the production of Ethanol to stop.

Mr. Green shows in his article;

“The Many Downsides of Ethanol

 

While ethanol promoters make it sound as if ethanol is the solution to all our energy woes—dependence on foreign oil, diminishing oil stocks, the environmental consequences of energy use, the decline of the family farm, and so on—a considerable amount of research has shown that ethanol has far more peril than it does promise.”

 

Here we now begin the true identity of Ethanol and just why it needs to be stopped before it kills us all!  This “fuel” is nothing more then alchol with an additive to stop people from using it as a drink to get drunk on. Ethanol is a corn whiskey, but with some features added that would kill an individual if they tried to drink it to get drunk. Mr. Green goes on to explain about the side affects of Ethanol and the “Greenhouse Emissions”

 

Under the title; Ethanol and Greenhouse Gas Emissions. Mr. Green shows the very bad effects that Ethanol does have on the environment. Mr. Green shows us that Ethanol does not help the environment at all and in most cases, it hurts the environment!

 

“Though ethanol is often pitched as a good solution to climate change because it simply recirculates carbon in the atmosphere, there is more than one kind of greenhouse gas to consider. Ethanol, blended with gasoline, actually turns out to increase the formation of potent greenhouse gases more than gasoline does by itself. As far back as 1997, the U.S. Government Accountability Office determined

that the ethanol production process produces relatively more nitrous oxide and other potent greenhouse gases than does gasoline. In contrast, the greenhouse gases released during the conventional gasoline fuel cycle contain relatively more of the less potent type, namely, carbon dioxide.11”

 

Wait, this comes from the United States Government Accountability Office?  Where was the news media when this came out?  Why have they not brought up questions about this in the news media?  Has the news media left the people of the United States out in the cold with this very important news?  So many questions that were never asked, so many questions that have fallen into the silent snow. Why did Congress not raise questions about this?  Where does Congress lie with the statement from the GAO? Have the people of the United States been left to find this out for themselves?  Well, we can say that it just gets better from here, if you hate Ethanol that is.

 

Mr. Green went on to quote a Nobel-prize-winning chemist, (believe us, this Nobel prize is nothing like the one Obama got!  This Nobel prize actually had to be earned by hard work and dedication, both of which Obama knows little about!);

 

Last fall, Paul Crutzen, a Nobel-prize-winning chemist, confirmed these findings. Crutzen and his

coauthors found that [w]hen the extra N2O emission from biofuel production is calculated in “CO2-equivalent” global warming terms, and compared with the quasicooling effect of “saving” emissions of fossil fuel derived CO2, the outcome is that the production of commonly used biofuels, such as biodiesel from rapeseed and bioethanol from corn (maize), depending on N fertilizer uptake efficiency by the plants, can contribute as much or more to global warming by N2O emissions than cooling by fossil fuel savings.12

 

STOP THE PRESSES!!  HOLD YOUR HORSES!! LET THIS SINK IN!!!

 

What this Nobel-prize-winning Chemist and his co-authors are telling us is that Ethanol produces MORE, let us state that again so we are clear on this, MORE “Global Warming” is produced as stated by the Nobel prize winner, “…can contribute as much or more to global warming by N2O emissions than cooling by fossil fuel savings.”  We do not know if anyone will see this or not, but it seems that Ethanol contributes TO global warming MORE then plain gasoline without any additives!!  Now that is a statement to be considered, yet has anyone even looked at it? There is so much to consider with this paper that this article will have to be in two parts to encompass all that matters to the use of Ethanol and why it should be stopped!

 

 

Again, Mr. Green goes to scientists to get answers not to friends or lobbiest! Mr. Green shows us that Scientists make bold statements against the use of Ethanol;

 

In June 2007, two Colorado scientists, Jan F. Kreider, an engineering professor at the University of Colorado, and Peter S. Curtiss, a Boulder-based engineering consultant,

determined that carbon dioxide emissions from corn-based ethanol are worse than those of conventional gasoline and diesel fuel. They concluded that carbon emissions in the life-cycle sense are about 50 percent higher for ethanols than for traditional fossil fuels; such fuels are not the answer to global warming— they make it worse.13

Yes, it does say that the use of Ethanol does in FACT make the global warming ideas worse rather then better!!  Once again, why had Congress not picked that up, or maybe they did and they did not want to shut down their friends that ran the plants that make this Poison!  It does not end here though and this is why we asked permission from Mr. Green to write this article.  Each time a true research is done to find the effects of Ethanol it does not bode well for this “alternative” fuel, mainly because we should NEVER consider it to be an alternative.

 

In yet another research, it is stated;

 

“In February 2008, researcher Timothy Searchinger and colleagues calculated that

“corn-based” ethanol, instead of producing a 20% savings, nearly doubles greenhouse emissions over

30 years and increases greenhouse gases for 167 years. Biofuels from switchgrass, if grown on U.S.

corn lands, increase emissions by 50%.14”

 

 

Here it is shown that the use of these “alternative” fuels will INCREASE greenhouse gases for 167 YEARS!!!  We have not seen any research, which states the same about plain gasoline at all.  We have to ask why is this Poison being thrown upon us?  Why has no one taken up arms to stop the use of this Poison?  If Ethanol was so good, then why have these scientist and Nobel prize winners make such statements?  They all cannot be wrong.  Even the EPA gets into the mix with the bad affiliation to Ethanol. The EPA is now the very agency saying it is bad to drill almost everywhere, yet they are silent for the most part about the bad sides of Ethanol!

 

In another part of Mr. Green’s article; Ethanol and Air Pollution, Mr. Green shows yet another reason to ask why Ethanol is even allowed to be used.

 

“Although the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) claims a net decrease in greenhouse gas emissions from using ethanol, they recognize that ethanol use is a problem for conventional air pollutants. Ethanol use, according to the EPA, will increase the emission of chemicals that lead to the production of ozone, one of the nation’s most challenging local air pollutants.”

 

At the same time, other vehicle emissions may increase as a result of greater renewable fuel use. Nationwide, EPA estimates an increase in total emissions of volatile organic compounds and nitrogen

oxides (VOC + NOx) between 41,000 and 83,000 tons [due to increased use of ethanol]. . . .

Areas that experience a substantial increase in ethanol may see an increase in VOC emissions

between 4 and 5 percent and an increase in Nox emissions between 6 and 7 percent from gasoline powered vehicles and equipment.15

 

 

Once again this shows that Ethanol is not good for the environment.  How many times must we know of this before we as a people do anything about it?  We often wonder if maybe we reach only those who really care and that may only be the 2% of the population that really know what is going on in the United States.  Does anyone even care anymore? Are articles filled with facts and truth just being printed so that some of the people know what is going on?  Does anyone pass this information on or is it that the people don’t care about anything but what is laid in the very front of them? This is a two part story so in closing we will present a statement of fact given in Mr. Green’s article.  This statement is very revealing to the amount of land needed to sustain what some consider as a “replenishable” FUEL.  This really should not be considered since it is a poison and that will be shown in part 2.

 

Producing enough ethanol from switch grass to displace 1 million barrels of oil

per day would require that 25 million acres of land be planted in switch grass. That is

an area about the size of Kentucky.

 

 

Release from Mr. Green;

 

Dear Leon –

 

Thank you for your kind words. As long as you cite the material accurately, and give proper credit, you’re welcome to quote from the paper you mention extensively.

 

Best,

 

Ken

 

———————————–

Kenneth P. Green

Resident Scholar

American Enterprise Institute

 

Notes;

 

11. Robert Bryce, Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusions of

Energy Independence (New York, NY: PublicAffairs, 2008), 165;

and U.S. General Accounting Office, “Tax Policy: Effects of the

Alcohol Fuels Tax Incentives,” report to the chairman, House

Committee on Ways and Means, March 1997, 17, available at

www.gao.gov/archive/1997/gg97041.pdf (accessed July 23, 2008).

12. P. J. Crutzen, A. R. Mosier, K. A. Smith, and W. Winiwarter,

“N2O Release from Agro-Biofuel Production Negates

Global Warming Reduction by Replacing Fossil Fuels,”

Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics 8, no. 2 (January 2008),

available at www.atmos-chem-phys.net/8/389/2008/acp-8-389-

2008.pdf (accessed July 23, 2008).

13. Jan F. Kreider and Peter S. Curtiss, “Comprehensive

Evaluation of Impacts from Potential, Future Automotive

Fuel Replacements,” (paper, American Society of Mechanical

Engineers, Energy Sustainability 2007 conference, Long Beach,

CA, June 27–30, 2007), available at www.fuelsandenergy.com/

papers/ES2007-36234.pdf (accessed July 23, 2008).

14. Timothy Searchinger et al., “Use of U.S. Croplands for Biofuels

Increases Greenhouse Gases through Emissions from Land-Use

Change,” Science 319, no. 5867 (February 28, 2008): 1238–40.

15. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Transportation

and Air Quality, “EPA Finalizes Regulations for a

Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) Program for 2007 and Beyond,”

April 2007, available at www.epa.gov/otaq/renewablefuels/

420f07019.pdf (accessed July 23, 2008).

 


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